Treasure Coast Fishing University Lures Ladies

STUART, FL, 5/2012 — Nearly sixty women traveled to the Treasure Coast “Ladies, Let’s Go Fishing!” University to learn fishing from the experts May 18-20 at Pirates Cove Resort & Marina, Stuart, FL. Held in conjunction with Florida’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), the program was attended by women who came for a variety of reasons. Owner of three boats up to 45′ and tired of cruising, Jan Bethmann, Palm City, FL wanted to experience the excitement of fishing. Susan Reinschmidt, Stuart, FL, whose late husband was a commercial fisherman, yearned to get back into the sport and learn techniques to use from her kayak. For Alice Bernhardt, Hobe Sound, FL fishing was on her bucket list.

Held in celebration of National Safe Boating Week, the LLGF University kicked off with the Harbor Financial Services Welcome Reception Friday evening, May 18 from 6:30-8:30 pm. Sponsors and donors were recognized.

The classroom portion began at 8:00 am on Saturday, where fishing techniques were taught at beginner and intermediate/advanced levels. Fishing topics were Conservation and Fish Habitats/Heather Sneed of the FWC, Rod and Reel Basics and Bottom Fishing/Capt. George Mittler, Inshore/Capt. Marcia Foosaner, Offshore/Capt. Peter Wright and Fly Fishing/Capt. Jim Anson. The legendary instructors provided ladies an incredible experience. Lunch featured a presentation on fish life timelines, how fishing regulations are formulated and why they are necessary to protect fish populations by Sharon McBreen of PEW Environment Group. After lunch, the women participated in several “hands-on” fishing stations, such as conservation techniques, spin casting, net casting, landing and releasing, trailer backing, fly casting, knot tying, gaffing grapefruits, boat handling and reeling against pressure.

On Sunday, May 20, participants practiced their newly learned skills from inshore, offshore and group boats. They returned with smiles and stories of catching or releasing sailfish, mahi, snook, trout and more. Upon releasing the first sailfish of her life after a fifteen-minute fight on My Other Honey, Aida Saba Cavooris, Port St. Lucie exclaimed, “I felt like I was having a heart attack!” Lisa Morris, Juno Beach, FL went fishing offshore for the first time of her life and was proud to catch a 24-inch mahi-mahi. The Infinityreturned with an impressive 25 lb. bull mahi-mahi, plus two smaller mahi-mahi. The inshore boats released several trout, snook and more. Kristen Swayze, Palm City, FL and Karen Sukolsky, Melbourne Beach, FL had a chance to fly fish from the beach with Capt. Jonathan Earhart on Chaos. Other inshore participants released snook and jack crevalle. Ladies on the group boat returned with snapper species. Many women enjoyed making connections with others who also enjoy fishing.

Featured on national network television and more, the series is held in conjunction with the FWC through the Sport Fish Restoration Program, with major partners including Mercury Outboards, Ranger, Silver Airways, Minn Kota, Humminbird, and Magic Tilt Trailers. Annual sponsors were West Marine, Bob’s Machine Shop, Power-Pole, Hook & Tackle, Eagle Claw, Tigress Outriggers, Treasure Cay Beach Marina & Golf Resort and Bimini Big Game Club. Class sponsors included Bimini Sands Resort & Marina, Stingray Fishing Outfitters, PEW Environment Group and Pirates Cove & Marina. Annual Patron sponsors were Mack’s Fish Camp, Sea Striker, Star Rods, Aylesworth’s Fish & Bait, Ventafish, Coconut Palm Inn and Ocean Tamer. Patron sponsors for Treasure Coast only were River Palm Cottages / Capt. Rufus Wakeman, Terry Gibson and Captains Billy Poertner, James Jackson, Will Shook and Joe Massaro. Several local charter captains worked one-on-one for fishing skills with the ladies, including Mark Nichols of DOA Lures.

The final 2012 event is in Islamorada, FL Nov. 9-11. Registration is $115 for the first twenty and $145 thereafter. Registration includes instruction, use of equipment, hands-on training, networking reception and fundraisers, meals, goody bags and more. No equipment or experience is necessary. Charter fishing is additional. Contact: phone (954) 475-9068; email; website

Calendar information:  “Ladies, Let’s Go Fishing!’ University, Islamorada, FL Nov. 9-11

“Ladies, Let’s Go Fishing!”® saltwater fishing University for women, Nov. 9-11, Holiday Isle Resort, Islamorada, FL. Early registration of $115 for the first twenty, then $145 thereafter and includes networking reception and fundraisers, classes at beginner/advanced levels, lunch, hands-on skill stations, goody bag and more. Fishing adventure fees for Sunday are additional. Contact: phone (954) 475-9068; email; website

Treasure Coast Fishing Report, 5/20/2012. After a week of storms and wind, Mother Nature let up exactly the day the ladies went fishing! The women fished out of Stuart for a half day.

Infinity/Capt. Charlie Burns – Lana Richesin, Vero Beach, FL and Beth Bohovsky, Port St. Lucie, FL shared in the excitement of catching a big 25 lb. big bull mahi-mahi while slow trolling skirted ballyhoo in 500 ft. of water. Other ladies Becky Gibbons, Coral Springs, FL and Christina Beaudoin, Sanford, FL caught mahi-mahi ranging from 24” to 26.”

My Other Honey/Capt. Pete Morello – Slow trolling live pilchards in 500 to 600 ft. of water landed Aida Cavooris, Port St. Lucie, FL her first sailfish. “I thought I was having a heart attack!” she exclaimed. Although it is customary that one goes for a swim upon releasing a first billfish, the crew of “My Other Honey” was nice by only spraying Cavooris with the hose. In total, seven mahi-mahi ranging from 24” to 32” were caught. At one point the ladies had a triple header with Lisa Morris, Juno Beach, FL catching her first mahi-mahi.

Let’s Go Fish/Capt. Squeeky Kelly – Everyone caught fish with a total of 15 spotted seatrout ranging from 14” to 25” and one ladyfish. The ladies got to practice their casting technique and worked with various artificial lures during their adventure. On the way in the ladies racked up brownie points by rescuing a vessel that had broken down.

Chaos Charters/Capt. Jon Earhart – Karen Sukolsky, Melbourne Beach, FL and her daughter, Kristin Swayze, Palm City, FL caught and released five snook from 20” to 26” as well as two jack crevalle. Both were happy to have the chance to learn how to fly fish, with Swayze commenting that ‘fly fishing is awesome!’

Off the Banks/Capt. Ryan Floyd – While using live shrimp, Melissa Barnes, Stuart, FL caught an 11” mangrove snapper, 14” croaker and 14” spotted sea trout. The anglers learned how to skip-cast under docks and work artificial lures, releasing two nice snook.

Silver Lining/Capt. Danny Barrow – Everyone caught fish with Amanda Ketterer, Jensen Beach, FL catching and releasing her first ever saltwater fish, a spotted sea trout. Capt. Barrow taught the ladies how to fish artificials on the grass flats and dock pilings where Tara Jacobs, Palm City, FL was happy to report that she caught a “gator trout”

Terry Gibson – Fishing with artificial lures, the ladies released 6 trout and learned to use top water lures, chug bugs and skinny dipper lures.

Safari One – The women returned with a mutton snapper, banded rudderfish, a lane snapper and newly-found friends.

Comments from Participants:
“Learned so much and had a blast!” – Valerie Price, Port St. Lucie, FL
“So much fabulous and interesting info, wish it were longer!” – Karen Capelli, Stuart, FL
“Knowledge means fishing success! Also, don’t teach your trash to swim!” – Sonya Baylor, Port St. Lucie, FL `
“Now I don’t have to rely on my hubby!” – Tiffany Kuhn, Jensen Beach, FL
“Knowledge is key – need to learn the fishing tricks and keep it simple!” – Eileen Forest, Stuart, FL
“Love to fish but always want to learn more!” – Patricia D’annolfo, Stuart, FL
“Conservation is up to ME!” – Lisa Morris, Juno Beach, FL
“Love fishing, Very goood weekend! – Tara Jacobs, Palm City, FL
“Just the right combination of fishing and fun!” – Sharon McBreen, Orlando, FL

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